Category Archives: 1970s

Dog Days of Summer

It’s hot where I live in Southern California, although I’m close enough to the ocean to get some cool breezes.  I dress for the heat in light weight pants and cotton shirts, preferably very thin Indian cotton. However, many women choose … Continue reading

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Fashion Commentary from Life Magazine, 1970

Women often get ridiculed for following fashion trends, even though lowly consumers are hardly the ones who think them up.  In 1970, pretty much everyone was confused.  It was the time of the great “maxi” versus “mini” confrontation, and even … Continue reading

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Unquilting/Requilting, 1970

This picture portrays a West Virginia coop turning old quilts into new items.  If you look carefully, it appears that the oldest woman in the back on the right is hand stitching a pillow, while the woman at the far … Continue reading

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Aging in Color: Ruth Adler Schnee

Famous textile designer Ruth Adler Schnee (1923-2023) died this month at the age of 99.  She is credited with bringing textile design into the world of midcentury modernism.  The daughter of an antiquarian bookseller and a Bauhaus graduate, her family … Continue reading

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Lois Alexander and the Black Fashion Museum

Most fashion museums focus on the works of famous designers and the clothes of the well-off women who supported them.  The Black Fashion Museum, which existed from 1979 to 2007, had a different mission.  Under the leadership of the visionary … Continue reading

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Hearts on their Sleeves–The Terno in Los Angeles

In what contexts do immigrants wear their native dress?  For Filipina women, the most distinctive item of clothing is the terno—a dress or set of matching separates with a much extended, wing-like upper sleeve, as seen in the picture above. … Continue reading

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Stylish Threesome

This eBay find is almost certainly a three-generation photo, one of my favorite kinds.  The grandmother stands in the middle, with her daughter to her left and her granddaughter to the right.  It is some kind of dress up event … Continue reading

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The Dog Days of Summer

When it’s hot out I tend to cover up in loose clothing, choosing baggy pants and long sleeved cotton shirts.  The older woman above takes the opposite approach.  She opens up her body to the breeze with a sleeveless top, … Continue reading

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Big Hair at the Grand Canyon, 1972

That’s a pretty elaborate hairdo for a vacation outing, but some people put in a lot of effort to look good no matter what the occasion.  This very cheerful woman was not following current hairstyles, which had moved on to … Continue reading

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That Seventies Polyester

Was there ever another decade more closely associated with a fabric than the seventies and polyester?  I have a book featuring Sears clothing from the early 1970s, and it is simply amazing how many of the clothes are made from … Continue reading

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